I wish to give a public special thanks to Donald Kolberg for the honor of being selected as November's featured artist in Art Core. Donald is a gifted artist and writer, and his wonderful Art Core is a fabulous site devoted to established as well as up and coming artists. .Again, thanks Donald!
ART CORE INTERVIEW ~ Donald Kolberg, November 2009
Art Core is celebrating the remarkable work of a very gifted artist this month:
Art Core: You have a variety of styles. Could you tell us some more about your work? That has a lot to do with an insatiable desire to cram a lot of art experience into an accelerated amount of time. I began with loose impressionism, and then tightened up for a period, and now I find I often combine the two. I do not limit myself to canvas if a need calls for something else. I work in oils and acrylics, pastel at times, and can often be aggressive with color but then turn around and do something 100% in the opposite direction.
Art Core: When you paint a portrait you capture a spark of that person. How do you translate that emotion into painting? That is very generous, thank you so much. It doesn’t hurt that I love people. They are beautiful and complicated. As a child throughout my teenage years I adored playing the staring game, the one where two people stare into each ether’s eyes and the first to look away loses. I got really good at that game. It taught me to never shy away from looking deeply into a person’s eyes. Eyes truly are the window to the soul and the longer you look the more you know. I try to tap into whatever is going within that person, take that in and absorb it, and then translate that into the work. I am definitely much more concerned about capturing an essence than creating great work. I guess to sum it up it isn’t a technical thing for me, but rather a personal thing. All my painting is personal. To be frank, I don’t know how I do any of it.
Art Core: What famous artists have influenced you, and how? Bouguereau, Whistler, Singer Sargeant, Westerberg, Kassan, Puliese, Lindstrom, Ignatov, Lipking, Alexander Volkov. I could literally go on and on. I’ve recently discovered the wonderful Graydon Parrish. All of these artists are masterful with conveying mood and emotion; it simply oozes from their work. No matter how technically well executed a painting may be, if it doesn’t have life it makes me uncomfortable. Must have life, emotion, passion.
Art Core: What do you do for fun (besides painting and drawing)? Seriously not much right now. My husband and I use to do a lot of trail riding, and I really miss that. We are both self employed and free time often is not an option. We must work all aspects of business which takes a great deal of time. On occasion his work spills into mine and vice versa. We do well to go to a restaurant once every couple of weeks. But that is okay, that is what it takes.
Art Core: What inspires you to create art? Music and viewing good portraiture inspires me, but I rarely view abstract art if I can help it. Abstracts have to come from someplace within, there is no visual to go by. They can be very difficult and if not done while in the moment a work will turn out visually contrived. I have kind of a photographic memory when it comes to paintings anyway, so I never want another abstract to influence what I do. How do I keep motivated when things get tough in the studio? I’ve learned it is best to walk away and come back with fresh eyes and spirit in order to keep from overworking a painting.
Art Core: How have you handled the business side of being an artist? The business side is a necessary evil and takes entirely too much time away from the creative process. I’ve reluctantly removed the comment option on my blog in some small effort to remedy serious time constraints. Something had to give as I couldn’t possibly live with myself if I did not respond to each and every comment left by readers. Other than that one must be creative and work all angles. The art market is a tough market, especially in this economy.
Art Core: What advice would you give to an artist just starting out? Never give up, just don’t do it. If you cannot afford to do it full time, paint when you can. And if at all possible, find someone to assist with the business end!